Brides Up North

Happy Hitchcock – A Themed Engagement Shoot In The North East – Vicky & Adam

August 20th, 2013 | Julia Braime

Sean Elliott Photography

Today’s cool and quirky feature is a perfect antidote to the usually sugar coated world of weddings.  If you just need a breather from all that wedding planning, this delectably dark set of images will feel like a sharp shot of espresso, and should fire up those creative juices again.

Sent to me by wedding blog favourite Sean Elliott Photography and bride to be Vicky of Floral Quarter, this Hitchcock inspired engagement shoot is the perfect piece of film noir for an otherwise dull Tuesday.  Enjoy.

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Roses & Thistles: Maggie Sottero For A Real Wedding At The Alnwick Garden, Northumberland – Samantha & Kenny

August 6th, 2013 | Julia Braime

Sean Elliott Photography

I’m such a tease aren’t I?!  After pressing publish on Monday morning’s blog post, I knew that it would be cruel not to share the rest of the gorgeous shots from Sam and Kenny’s beautiful Real Wedding at The Alnwick Garden on the blog.  After all, it’s one of the prettiest days I’ve seen.  Could these two be any more photogenic?

So, the purpose of yesterday’s post was to alert you to a very special event coming up very, very soon – opening our autumn season, in fact – The Brides Up North Luxury & Vintage Wedding Exhibition at The Alnwick Garden on Sunday 1st September 2013.  To get the full lowdown and register for completely free VIP Bride To Be entry and your goody bag, click here

Once you’ve been there, done that, some back to share the rest of Sam and Kenny’s big day.  With images by the ever talented Sean Elliott Photography (who’ll be joining us on September 1st too), this is one to remember. 

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sam says:  We got engaged in Dubai, in September 2009. Kenny wrote ‘Marry me?’ in rose petals on the bed whilst I was at the pool sunbathing… quite the romantic!

Sean Elliott Photography

We tied the knot in June at The Alnwick Garden in the Pavilion Room.  We felt that the Garden was somewhere different, with stunning grounds for the perfect photos.  It’s also a memorable venue for people who hadn’t been before – the grand cascade as the main viewpoint throughout the ceremony, the rose garden, bamboo maze, the tree house and all of the water features gave guests that little something extra, over and above a wedding in a hotel or stately home.

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

We didn’t have a theme, we just wanted to keep it simple and relaxed – a bit like us!  We chose a colour scheme of black and white with pinks and whites in the bouquets and button holes adding a splash of colour.

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

I wore the Maggie Sottero “Reece” dress from Blush Bridal Boutique in Uppermill, Saddleworth and Kenny wore a kilt, in Morrison Clan tartan… sticking to family tradition.  He had it hand-made at Nicholson Kiltmakers in Edinburgh.

Sean Elliott Photography

The groomsmen wore kilts in Blackwatch tartan (hired from Slaters), sticking to the groom’s Scottish roots and the bridesmaids wore simple black floor length dresses from Monsoon.

Sean Elliott Photography

The bridesmaids and I had peony rose bouquets with a mix of pinks and some white roses and Kenny had a  pink peony buttonhole (to match my bouquet) with Scottish thistles.

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Getting ready with my mum and the bridesmaids was great fun, very relaxed and involved quite a lot of champagne!

Sean Elliott Photography

Guests were taken to the venue by Dreadnought Coaches in the 1952 Leyland Titan.   The guests and groomsmen travelled in more style than the bridal party!  When boarding the bus, the groom, best man and ushers gave everyone a glass of fizz to get the celebrations started. I think it’s fair to say the journey for the guests was a real social event!

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Arco String Quartet played some beautiful music for our guests’ arrival, my entrance, signing the register and at end of the ceremony – including Elbow – One Day Like This – and The Beatles – All You Need Is Love.

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Kenny’s father made all of the ladies’ favours by hand – strawberry and champagne preserve, with little poem on the labels: “A spoonful of sugar and two sweet kisses, now Kenny and Sam are Mr and Mrs”.

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

The best man’s speech was  brilliant, one of the best I’ve ever seen. He used a video to really take the mick out of Kenny and had everyone in fits of laughter. ‘Mr Lover Man, Shabba’ was the song of choice for the video… very entertaining!  It was also great to have all of our nearest and dearest in one room together as it doesn’t happen all that often!

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

A friend of ours, DJ James Cummings provided the evening entertainment.  We had a small part of the night dedicated to a ceilidh too, which went down really well and Sean Elliott got some great action shots!

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

After the wedding we did a road trip through California – Vegas, San Francisco, Route 1 with various stop offs including Santa Barbara and Carmel, finishing off in LA, going to the Standard Hotel for their famous rooftop party on the last night of our honeymoon… the perfect end!

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography

My top tips for other Brides Up North would be: don’t get stressed, don’t have massively high expectations that you may find impossible to meet, make sure your wedding reflects you as a couple, no-one else (i.e. don’t try to imitate anyone else, or do something just because you think your guests will like it – if you don’t), and just relax and enjoy every single moment, from planning, right through to sending out your thank you cards!

Sean Elliott Photography

 

Congratulations Sam & Kenny!

Get the date in your diaries – I might have mentioned it a few times (too many?) but our opening event of the season – The Brides Up North Luxury & Vintage Wedding Exhibition at The Alnwick Garden is on Sunday 1st September 2013 from 11am till 4pm.  Pre register now for free entry and your VIP Bride To Be Goody Bag!

 

Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Sean Elliott Photography

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Real Wedding Recap Summer 2013: Mellow Yellow! A Real Wedding In The North East – Steph & Dan

June 19th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Its holiday season here on the blog, and as the team take a break until to rest and recharge for the second half of what’s set to be the biggest and best year year yet at Brides Up North HQ, we’ll be leaving you with a reduced blogging schedule so that you still get your daily dose of wedding pretty. 

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Usual service will recommence on 1st July 2013,  but in the meantime watch out for recaps of our favourite Real Weddings so far in 2013, plenty of eye candy, new features that we won’t be able to wait to share, some special supplier showcases and a couple of surprises too!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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I reckon a dash of sunshine is just what the doctor ordered.  First shared here on the blog back on a cold January’s morning, step forward Steph, Dan and their beautiful flower filled Summer wedding in the North East.  Let’s get mellow with the yellow.

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With images from Brides Up North Featured Supplier Sean Elliott Photography

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Steph says: We got engaged on 14th May 2011 in Newcastle – I had a long wait as we are childhood sweethearts who had been together for 11 years prior to our engagement!

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We were married on 11th August 2012 at Crook Hall and Gardens which is a hidden gem in Durham. We had the venue until 6pm, we then went to the Gala Theatre in Durham for our evening reception.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Right from the start we wanted an informal and rustic wedding so we went on the search for a barn conversion… despite having the Northumberland countryside on our doorstep there appeared to be a gap in the market for this up North as we couldn’t find one! A friend recommended Crook Hall and Gardens and as soon as we went there for afternoon tea we were sold! It’s a beautiful and unique venue with the most stunning collection of gardens and quirky decor. The medieval hall that we were married in was the perfect substitute to a barn ceremony. Crook Hall was so different to any wedding venue we had previously visited and we instantly fell in love with how beautiful it was.

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My mum and dad surprised me with a Beaumont vintage car to take me to the wedding. 

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Sean Elliott Photography

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It took me ages to choose a colour scheme – I didn’t want to choose a colour at first as I thought it would limit me in the hunt to find bridesmaid dresses! Eventually we found some navy bridesmaid dresses and then through my obsession of scrolling through Pinterest I found a picture of a girl in a navy dress and yellow shoes. From this point my colour theme was navy and yellow! The bridesmaids wore navy dresses and mustard shoes, we had yellow in our flowers and yellow balloons!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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As already stated, I have an obsession with lace therefore it was never an option to even consider not having a lace dress. The dress I chose was a Justin Alexander dress 8530. It is a beautiful lace mermaid gown with a bateau neckline. The dress comes with a veil but I purchased a separate lace edged cathedral veil from Joyce Jackson called Orlando that I fell in love with in the bridal shop – Mia Sposa Bridal & Menswear in Newcastle.

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The shoes were a beautiful vintage style lace up pair from Rainbow Club called Clara.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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My brother in-law’s sister played the harp as guests were coming into the wedding. She also played Canon in D as we walked back down the aisle after our ceremony and during our drinks reception following the ceremony.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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I carried a vintage style hand tied bouquet including ivory rose, lisianthus, freesia, yellow dill, achilliea which was bound with lace.  My bridesmaids had simple hand tied gypsophila.  The groom and groomsmen wore buttonholes with an achilliea and beargrass loop.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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The bridesmaids wore beautiful but simple lace navy dresses from Monsoon and their yellow suede shoes were from ClarksThe groom and groomsmen wore navy suits hired from Waltons Menswear.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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My vision from the start was to provide a rustic / vintage theme. Anyone who knows me is aware I have an obsession with lace and so there was no doubt that lace would also play a huge part in my theme! We made lace chair ties, lace covered jam jars, put lace around the bouquets, the bridesmaid dresses were lace and obviously I had a lace dress!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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I loved the idea of homemade décor and personalised touches that we could keep hold of for years to come. We spent time searching craft markets for decorative inspiration and spent months collecting jam jars and milk bottles that we could decorate with lace, twine and buttons. My sister made old fashioned luggage tags and stamped them with messages and my friends and I made homemade raspberry jam as name places and favours. For our table names we painted the glass of old fashioned photo frames with black board paint and wrote the table names in chalk paint. We also hung slates in the gardens with extracts from our readings on and used an old fashioned vintage suitcase for our cards and gifts.

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As we had the venue booked from 11.30 and our ceremony wasn’t until 12.30 we had lawn games for the guests to enjoy in the gardens as we wanted them to make the most of the venue and spend as much time there as possible.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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We had decorations hanging from the trees and this made for some beautiful pictures when we were cutting the cake.  We used Ladybird Cakes from Tynemouth and had a three tier cake made of carrot cake, raspberry and white chocolate, and lemon sponge.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

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I absolutely loved the whole day and it genuinely exceeded all my expectations! However there are two parts of the day that stand out as my favourite. The first being when my friends and I are having fun in the gardens while trying to find our way through the maze with the balloons.  We used two yellow balloons to add an element of fun, a flash of colour and we also wanted it to express our informal theme of the day. It provided some excellent photo opportunities!  There is a great photo of my friends who surprisingly all agreed to lie down in the grass to capture an amazing photo of their legs poking above the flowers!

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My other favourite part was when Dan and I managed to have time with just the two of us in the gardens as the sun was setting – Sean has managed to capture the most amazing pictures we could have ever asked for! You spend most of your wedding day speaking to everyone else but each other so it was nice to have some time to savour the moment and enjoy our own company as Mr and Mrs!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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As part of our photography package we purchased the Photo Peg to entertain the evening guests. This was an excellent alternative to a photo booth! Polaroid pictures were taken of the guests holding a large vintage frame and they held up a chalk board with a message for us. The polaroid’s were then pegged on a ‘washing line’ and at the end of the night the guests could take the pictures home as a keepsake. 

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We used Colin Cook – The North East Wedding DJ who provided our evening entertainment and mood up-lighting and The Vintage Tea Company for hire of bunting, cake stands and crockery for our floral decorations in the evening venue.

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After the wedding we honeymooned in Thailand – we spent time in Bangkok, Koh Samui and Koh Phangan.

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My top tip for other Brides Up North is don’t feel pressure to conform to the norm! Our wedding may not have been the most traditional but we made it personal to us and we made sure that it was fun! Make sure you set time aside in the day to spend time with each other – you’ll be surprised how little you’ll see of each other!! Spend time searching for an amazing photographer… Sean has taken the most beautiful and unique pictures which has provided us with memories to last a lifetime!

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Congratulations Steph & Dan!

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Get in touch to see your own Real Wedding featured on the blog!  Here’s how to do it!

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  – Images © 2013 Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, but this is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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Love & Laughter: A Tea Length Justin Alexander Gown For A Fun Filled Real Wedding At Rockliffe Hall – Rebecca & Philip

April 25th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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We are in the North East this morning for an understated and elegant Real Wedding filled with pretty details, love and laughter.  Rebecca and Philip chose a stunning venue and used some excellent Brides Up North Featured Suppliers to make their big day super special. 

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Rebecca says:  Thank you for your blog! It became my bible in the run up to my wedding!  Not only was I able to source my photographer and entertainment through your directory but  many of my suppliers featured in your blog in the time leading up to my wedding which was always reassuring as your blog/you became my unofficial wedding planner. Thank you for the advice and the inspiration. I will still be checking in to get my fill of all things wedding.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Rebecca says: Phil and I were engaged in Newcastle the day after my 29th Birthday on January 8th 2010, after an 11 year “courtship”; we got together back in September 1999.

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Phil surprised me for my birthday with a magical mystery tour which saw us travel from our then home in Leeds to our home turf Newcastle for a weekend away. I was in the early stages of pregnancy and was in need of a rest before dinner and Phil said he would leave me in peace and go and do some shopping. At dinner I had asked Phil in jest if he had managed to find me a ring while he was out. His response was a yes and that if I wanted we could go and get it tomorrow! We went and purchased the ring and then went to meet our parents for lunch where Phil asked my Dad’s permission. I was presented with the ring at lunch in front of our parents who were all thrilled. I joke and say that Phil has never really asked me to marry him we just got engaged.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Our wedding was on 21st July 2012. Two years after we got engaged; we had the small matter of having a baby to contend with first.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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We were married at the gorgeous Rockliffe Hall Hotel, Hurwurth on Tees, Darlington. The ceremony was in the Old Hall Arches and the reception was in the Rockliffe Suite.

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Have you been to Rockliffe? If you have then I probably don’t need to tell you why we made the decision to get married there. Phil and I at the time of our engagement were both working in jobs that meant we travelled a lot staying in many hotels around the country and it was reaching the point where very few places we were staying for social occasions would make us stop and stay “wow”, but Rockliffe did. We stayed at Rockliffe for Phil’s birthday in the March after our engagement and asked to have a look around. It had everything we were looking for and more; a more traditional area for the ceremony; a large banqueting suite that would be appropriate for the large number of guests for the evening; fabulous bedrooms; a spa and for my parents a golf course. The staff during our stay were attentive and professional. The food was – in the words of my mother in law – “to die for “. Perfect!  We booked the wedding that weekend and I am looking forward to many anniversary meals.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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The theme for the wedding was understated and the focus was on fun, good food and music; a real party rather than a formal event. We wanted to treat our guests, which was made up primarily of our family, to fabulous surroundings and all that Rockliffe has to offer while feeling comfortable and not stuffy. We wanted the day to reflect us as a couple and what we enjoy doing together and good food has always been paramount in our relationship. From the canapés to the hog roast we made sure that our guests all had full tums.

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I had been to seven weddings the year before all beautiful in their own way but I was all “quirked out”, I wanted to keep things simple so the focus of the day became the entertainment.  I didn’t want to be to “matchy” with my colour theme and chose complementary tones of pale blue and pink. 

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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My dress was a Justin Alexander tea length gown in style number 8555, I had never envisaged myself in a long gown and the dress helped set the tone of the day. I had seen a different Justin Alexander dress at a wedding fair and even paid a deposit before I had even tried it on. I went to try the dress on with bridesmaid and mum in tow and was asked by the shop to try on 8555 and quickly changed my mind, apparently my face changed when I put the dress on and the expressions on everyone else’s faces said that this was the one! I used a bridal shop in Shotton Colliery called Just Perfect and cannot praise the staff enough from allowing me to have a morning trying on as many dresses as I liked (even after I had made up my mind). From day one to picking the dress up they were fantastic! I wore Rainbow Club shoes called Coral and my hair I wore a hairband from Coast and a short veil.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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My bridesmaid dresses were a similar length and gave a 1950’s feel to the day (Alfred Angelo Style 7188 from Wild Brides at Heart). My flower-girls wore shoes from Monsoon and a dress from BHS.

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My husband and I discussed outfits and we both decided that morning suits were a no go and so the groom wore a Reiss suit, while his groomsmen and the dads wore navy suits from Autograph Collection at M&S (the official suit of the England football team), and ties also M&S. The groomsmen were given the suits as a gift and it has been lovely when I have spied them wearing it again

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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My hair was by Lesley and Rachel from Hooker and Young Darlington. I have always had short hair and had no intention of changing it for the big day by adding extensions (just not me) but I wanted it to look different. I wanted soft and feminine and Lesley delivered the goods! My make up was by Victoria Lees – Spa treatment manager at Rockliffe Hall. I have never been big on make-up and Victoria made sure that I felt comfortable.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Music throughout the day was a surprise for all of our guests. The string quartet and my chosen music for coming down the aisle was a surprise for Philip and set the tone for the day. I entered to “Dance of the Knights” by Prokofiev – this is the song that his team, Sunderland AFC, come out to on match days at the Stadium of light.  My favourite photo of Philip is one of him laughing as I am about to enter the music has started and the penny has dropped as to my choice. Walking down the aisle to laughter is not what every bride wants but it was the perfect way to start the party.

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Standing with Phil in front of our friends and family and our son Joe declaring to a silent room “That’s my Mammy and Daddy!” was a special moment and I am glad that Joe was part of our big day.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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We followed the ceremony with reception drink entertainment from a West Yorkshire based singer songwriter we both fell in love with on a night in the Rodley Barge when we lived in Leeds; Roger Davies. We had a pianist during the wedding breakfast and the Blue House Band provided music for dancing the night away to. The music was aside from Roger Davies was supplied by the team at AMV Live Music, who went out of their way to make sure that the music was exactly what we wanted. Our first dance was to “Your Song” by Elton John sang by Andy Garner of AMV (whose version was better than the original). My dance with my dad was to Moondance by Van Morrison and I don’t think my dad has recovered from busting such a move.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Our photographer was the fabulous Sean Elliott Photography! Sean is so personable it was just like having an extra friend to share our day. Sean also provided our “Picture Peg Project” at our evening reception.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Noble Fine Art supply stationery as part of the wedding package at Rockliffe (menus, name cards and table plan) and they also supplied my invitations and orders of service. The stationery was beautiful and they were a lovely team to work with.

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Simply Bows & Chair Covers dressed the room for the wedding breakfast. 

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Our cake was supplied by my very talented Aunt, who only does cakes as a hobby, she did me proud.  It was a four tier cake in a mixture of sponge and fruit, covered in over a hundred individually handmade flowers. 

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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Our florist was Adam Prest. Adam was one of the nicest people I came into contact with during my wedding preparations. He is simply amazing. He worked his magic on our bouquets, button holes and on the table and pedestal arrangements. In an early meeting with Adam I had said that I wasn’t entirely sure what I wanted but trusted him implicitly and he came up trumps.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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I have so many favourite parts of the day that it is hard to name just one but the spontaneous helicopter ride stands out! A guest of the hotel had flown his helicopter in for a game of golf so Phil and I asked if he would mind if we had a picture taken. He said he would to one better and would take us for a short flight.  It was totally unexpected and was the part of the day that Phil and I were together on our own (with the pilot).  Unfortunately and much to his disappointment we had lost Sean (our photographer) at this stage of the day and so we don’t have any professional photos.  There were stories of a man with a camera sprinting from one end of the hotel to the other to try and capture the moment once the rumour had spread. Poor Sean.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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The first dance spotlight shifting form me and Phil to my son and niece, both two, is still talked about as they took to the floor unexpectedly and camera shifted from the bride and groom to the far cuter pint sized couple.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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We honeymooned in Mexico at the Dreams resort, Puerto Adventuras which was the perfect resort for our family honeymoon. We were lucky enough to travel business class and after the wedding it was time for a lie down.

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(c) Sean Elliott Photography

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My top tips for other Brides Up North would be not to stress about the small details as no one will notice but you.  Pick suppliers that you like you are going to be spending a year planning your wedding with these people and you wanted to be able to enjoy the preparations. 

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Congratulations Rebecca & Philip!

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Want to see your own Real Wedding featured on Brides Up North?  Here’s how

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Sean Elliott Photography

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Mellow Yellow! A Real Wedding In The North East – Steph & Dan

January 30th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Sean Elliott Photography

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I reckon a dash of sunshine is just what the doctor ordered on a cold January morning.  Step forward Steph, Dan and their beautiful flower filled Summer wedding in the North East.  Let’s get mellow with the yellow as we start the descent to the weekend.

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With images from Brides Up North Featured Supplier Sean Elliott Photography

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Steph says: We got engaged on 14th May 2011 in Newcastle – I had a long wait as we are childhood sweethearts who had been together for 11 years prior to our engagement!

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We were married on 11th August 2012 at Crook Hall and Gardens which is a hidden gem in Durham. We had the venue until 6pm, we then went to the Gala Theatre in Durham for our evening reception.

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Sean Elliott Photography

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Right from the start we wanted an informal and rustic wedding so we went on the search for a barn conversion… despite having the Northumberland countryside on our doorstep there appeared to be a gap in the market for this up North as we couldn’t find one! A friend recommended Crook Hall and Gardens and as soon as we went there for afternoon tea we were sold! It’s a beautiful and unique venue with the most stunning collection of gardens and quirky decor. The medieval hall that we were married in was the perfect substitute to a barn ceremony. Crook Hall was so different to any wedding venue we had previously visited and we instantly fell in love with how beautiful it was.

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My mum and dad surprised me with a Beaumont vintage car to take me to the wedding. 

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Sean Elliott Photography

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It took me ages to choose a colour scheme – I didn’t want to choose a colour at first as I thought it would limit me in the hunt to find bridesmaid dresses! Eventually we found some navy bridesmaid dresses and then through my obsession of scrolling through Pinterest I found a picture of a girl in a navy dress and yellow shoes. From this point my colour theme was navy and yellow! The bridesmaids wore navy dresses and mustard shoes, we had yellow in our flowers and yellow balloons!

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As already stated, I have an obsession with lace therefore it was never an option to even consider not having a lace dress. The dress I chose was a Justin Alexander dress 8530. It is a beautiful lace mermaid gown with a bateau neckline. The dress comes with a veil but I purchased a separate lace edged cathedral veil from Joyce Jackson called Orlando that I fell in love with in the bridal shop – Mia Sposa Bridal & Menswear in Newcastle.

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The shoes were a beautiful vintage style lace up pair from Rainbow Club called Clara.

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My brother in-law’s sister played the harp as guests were coming into the wedding. She also played Canon in D as we walked back down the aisle after our ceremony and during our drinks reception following the ceremony.

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I carried a vintage style hand tied bouquet including ivory rose, lisianthus, freesia, yellow dill, achilliea which was bound with lace.  My bridesmaids had simple hand tied gypsophila.  The groom and groomsmen wore buttonholes with an achilliea and beargrass loop.

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The bridesmaids wore beautiful but simple lace navy dresses from Monsoon and their yellow suede shoes were from ClarksThe groom and groomsmen wore navy suits hired from Waltons Menswear.

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My vision from the start was to provide a rustic / vintage theme. Anyone who knows me is aware I have an obsession with lace and so there was no doubt that lace would also play a huge part in my theme! We made lace chair ties, lace covered jam jars, put lace around the bouquets, the bridesmaid dresses were lace and obviously I had a lace dress!

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I loved the idea of homemade décor and personalised touches that we could keep hold of for years to come. We spent time searching craft markets for decorative inspiration and spent months collecting jam jars and milk bottles that we could decorate with lace, twine and buttons. My sister made old fashioned luggage tags and stamped them with messages and my friends and I made homemade raspberry jam as name places and favours. For our table names we painted the glass of old fashioned photo frames with black board paint and wrote the table names in chalk paint. We also hung slates in the gardens with extracts from our readings on and used an old fashioned vintage suitcase for our cards and gifts.

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As we had the venue booked from 11.30 and our ceremony wasn’t until 12.30 we had lawn games for the guests to enjoy in the gardens as we wanted them to make the most of the venue and spend as much time there as possible.

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We had decorations hanging from the trees and this made for some beautiful pictures when we were cutting the cake.  We used Ladybird Cakes from Tynemouth and had a three tier cake made of carrot cake, raspberry and white chocolate, and lemon sponge.

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I absolutely loved the whole day and it genuinely exceeded all my expectations! However there are two parts of the day that stand out as my favourite. The first being when my friends and I are having fun in the gardens while trying to find our way through the maze with the balloons.  We used two yellow balloons to add an element of fun, a flash of colour and we also wanted it to express our informal theme of the day. It provided some excellent photo opportunities!  There is a great photo of my friends who surprisingly all agreed to lie down in the grass to capture an amazing photo of their legs poking above the flowers!

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My other favourite part was when Dan and I managed to have time with just the two of us in the gardens as the sun was setting – Sean has managed to capture the most amazing pictures we could have ever asked for! You spend most of your wedding day speaking to everyone else but each other so it was nice to have some time to savour the moment and enjoy our own company as Mr and Mrs!

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As part of our photography package we purchased the Photo Peg to entertain the evening guests. This was an excellent alternative to a photo booth! Polaroid pictures were taken of the guests holding a large vintage frame and they held up a chalk board with a message for us. The polaroid’s were then pegged on a ‘washing line’ and at the end of the night the guests could take the pictures home as a keepsake. 

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We used Colin Cook – The North East Wedding DJ who provided our evening entertainment and mood up-lighting and The Vintage Tea Company for hire of bunting, cake stands and crockery for our floral decorations in the evening venue.

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After the wedding we honeymooned in Thailand – we spent time in Bangkok, Koh Samui and Koh Phangan.

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My top tip for other Brides Up North is don’t feel pressure to conform to the norm! Our wedding may not have been the most traditional but we made it personal to us and we made sure that it was fun! Make sure you set time aside in the day to spend time with each other – you’ll be surprised how little you’ll see of each other!! Spend time searching for an amazing photographer… Sean has taken the most beautiful and unique pictures which has provided us with memories to last a lifetime!

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Congratulations Steph & Dan!

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Get in touch to see your own Real Wedding featured on the blog!  Here’s how to do it!

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  – Images © 2013 Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, but this is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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The Editorials: All White Weddings

January 27th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Wedding Magazine August/ September 2012

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Recently, I talked about how away from the pages of this site, I write for a huge range of regional and National glossy bridal magazines, with regular columns in some of my favourite titles (you can see the full list on my about page).  Obviously, features for print have to be fresh, so I hold back in sharing my pieces on the pages of the blog until after publication.  A month or so on though, rather than be relegated to being rather posh chip paper, I thought that my words might be useful to my online readers who didn’t manage to pick up a print copy.

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In this new blog series, The Editorials, I will be sharing my pre-published offline content, online.  Double the pretty! 

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First up, my feature for my regular column in Wedding Magazine, with my comments on the fresh and fabulous trend for all white weddings.  In my opinion, pale is always interesting…

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Wedding Magazine August/ September 2012

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There’s something going on in wedding blog land. Where you’d previously find matchy-matchy colour schemes or rainbow brights, it’s suddenly a total white out! Following the pale palette used so successfully at last year’s Royal Wedding, the trend for all white weddings is still going strong. In my opinion big days have never looked so beautiful.

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Bleached out blooms, snowy centre pieces and neutral details work together to create a wonderland that’s not just for Winter. This simple colour scheme, which can be classic or modern in equal measure, is effective across all four seasons. Keep things soft and pretty with vintage elements or sharpen the look up with chic styling. Choose any colour, so long as it’s white!

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Katy Melling Photography

Image by Katy Melling Photography

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Katy Melling Photography

Image by Katy Melling Photography

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Katy Melling Photography

Image by Katy Melling Photography

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Stand Out From The Crowd

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When working with an exclusively white or ivory colour base, don’t feel that whole wedding party has to match. Choosing complimentary hues or contrasting darker shades for your bridesmaids will create a striking backdrop for your wedding dress and make light posies pop.

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Sean Elliott Photography

Image by Sean Elliott Photography 

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Sean Elliott Photography

Image by Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography

Image by Sean Elliott Photography

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Colour Charts

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Diamond white, vintage cream, ivory. There’s more than one shade of pale! Keep things interesting by layering tones, textures and fabrics for a luxe look.

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Katy Melling Photography

Image by Katy Melling Photography 

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Lesley Meredith Photography - Red Floral Architecture

Image by Lesley Meredith Photography

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Alison Groves Photography

Image by Alison Groves Photography 

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Twinkle Twinkle!

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Add interest to starched table settings with a sprinkling of sparkle, shining silverware and springs of greenery.

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Faye Hatton Photography

Image by Faye Hatton Photography 

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Stan Seaton Photography

Image by Stan Seaton Photography

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Tierney Photography    Tierney Photography

Images by Tierney Photography 

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Karen McGowran

Image by Karen McGowran 

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Work With What You’ve Got

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For the whitest, brightest bouquets keep your choice of flowers seasonal. Choose paper whites and lily of the valley in Spring months and try adding a touch of mistletoe to a hand tied bunch at Christmas time.

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Helen Russell Photography

Image by Helen Russell Photography 

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Stan Seaton Photography

Image by Stan Seaton Photography 

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Add Interest

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A neutral canvas is easy to style. For a classy wedding day look, choose a high fashion heel or chic clutch in a tonal colour to add drama that’s perfectly understated.

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Sean Elliott Photography

Image by Sean Elliott Photography

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  – Images © 2013 as credited

This is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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Something Borrowed! A Real Wedding In The North East – Davina & Mark

August 21st, 2012 | Julia Braime

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A little before going full time with the wedding blog I received a Facebook message from an old school friend that really made my day (during what sometimes felt like uncertain times on unchartered waters!).  It said:

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Hi Julia
Not sure if you remember me from high school? Just wanted to say I am getting married in 8 weeks (ARGH) and your website is FAB! I am totally addicted to it. You’ve provided me with loads of inspiration so THANK YOU and keep up the good work.  Your site is a breath of fresh air to the stressed out bride(zilla)!
Davina xx.

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Davina lifted my spirits and made me feel that all the late nights hunched over the laptop and days spent campaigning for the Northern Revolution like a mad woman were worth it.  It is my absolute pleasure to share her Real Wedding on these pages today, with beautiful images by Brides Up North Featured Supplier Sean Elliott Photography.

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Davina says:  We got engaged on my birthday in Lake Garda. After ten years together I’d practically given up hope of ever being a Mrs. Mark gave me a watch for my birthday which totally threw me off the scent. We hired bikes from the hotel, had a lovely birthday lunch and then we were on a pier when he said ‘Shall we get married?’ I immediately said ‘Well you’ll have to get a ring!’ At which point he was on his knee with a beautiful ring. I was laughing and crying and then nearly crashed my bike on the way back looking at my sparkler.

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Sean Elliott Photography    Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography    Sean Elliott Photography .

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We were married on 30th July 2011 on Gibside Chapel.  We didn’t want a traditional church and something a bit different from a hotel. It was perfect and made great pictures. We used to walk or dogs around Derwent and Mark had enquired about weddings there four years earlier. We were a bit stuck for the reception. We went for lunch at our favourite restaurant, and where Mark had taken me for a date years ago when suddenly it struck us, why not here? The restaurant were fab and did us proud. We had antipasti and garlic breads to start, pizza or pasta for main and tiramisu or ice cream for dessert. It was nice to keep the Italian feel, do something a bit different and incorporate somewhere special to us. We then had the evening reception at the Copthorne Hotel where we stayed.

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I looked in magazines and websites for ideas so knew I wanted something with a vintage feel.  The colour scheme started off purple but ended up navy and pink.

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My dress was from Wedding Essentials in Newcastle. I knew even before we were engaged I wanted a Maggie Sottero dress. I had a nightmare at first not liking anything. The lady in the shop picked up ‘ the one’ I would never have picked it but as soon as I tried it on I loved it.

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I wanted the girls to be comfortable and not too bridesmaidy. I took Kate shopping and when she tried on a navy number from Coast I thought she looked lovely. Their shoes were from Monsoon and hair accessories from Accessorize.

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A friend I’d worked with was studying floristry provided the flowers at a very reasonable price. I met her and showed her some pictures from magazines and I was over the moon with the final product. My bouquet contained roses, freesias and peonies.

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My very favourite moment of the day was when the chapel doors opened and I saw Mark’s face. He just looked so happy. I’d been really really nervous and overwhelmed all morning and seeing him made me feel instantly calm. A good indicator I think.

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What really made the day special was all the borrowed items. I was adamant I wanted blue shoes, when I couldn’t find any my bridesmaid Kate’s mother lent me the most gorgeous pair of blue shoes. I also invested in a cheaper flat pair for the evening.

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My other bridesmaid Rebecca’s sister lent me her veil. My hair piece was my friend Anna’s. My friend and the wife of Simon who did a beautiful reading. My friend Jill did my hair. A mutual friend was our DJ.  The girls and I made our invitations on the day of the Royal Wedding. Kate’s parents transported the bridal party to the chapel on the wedding day. My bridesmaids did a fab job making the order of service and place cards.

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All in all a real group effort!

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We provided mix ups as favours. We also did a Mark and Davina quiz at the restaurant which provided many laughs. We named our tables after local races we had ran together as we are both keen runners.

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The best man’s speech was brilliant, it had a running theme and Matthew presented us both with special medals which was a great touch.

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For the evening party we filled the room with photos of ourselves, our family and friends throughout the years, they provided many laughs.

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A friend had introduced me to the fantastic Pet Lamb Patisserie. They were so lovely during the whole process. We had cupcakes towers with lots of different flavours, a big hit!

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Sean Elliott Photography    Sean Elliott Photography

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We loved Lake Garda so much we went back for our honeymoon (and we just went again for our first anniversary)!

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My top tip for other Brides Up North would be to do it your way and invite who you want to be there!

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Congratulations Davina & Mark!

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  – Images © 2012 Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, but this is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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We Did It Our Way! A Real Wedding In The North East – Katie-Jane & Daniel

July 23rd, 2012 | Julia Braime

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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Ever since I featured Katie-Jane and Daniel’s engagement shoot here on the wedding blog, I have been dying to show off their Real Wedding images.  However, since I used some of this stunning couple’s images to illustrate my first Wedding Magazine feature on All White Weddings (have you picked up your copy yet?), I held back until the magazine had gone to print.

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Now that it has hit the newsstands, as well as being excited about Brides Up North regularly featuring in the bible of all things Wedding (up the Northern Revolution!), I am also thrilled to be able to share this beautiful wedding with you today.  With images from Brides Up North Featured Supplier, the great Sean Elliott Photography, be inspired!

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What a way to kick off the week!

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Katie-Jane says: Daniel asked me to marry him on Friday June 5th 2010 on Sullivan Street in Soho NYC where we live and work. We were married on Monday 15th August 2011 at Saint Catherine’s Church Crook, County Durham and afterwards at Headlam Hall.

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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We chose to get married in the North East because we live in NYC at the moment we wanted to include our family and friends in the North East.   Saint Catherine’s is my local church where my parents where married and I was christened. I have many fond memories as a child at Headlam Hall with my grandparents, they are no longer with us so that venue had a connection.  We also wanted to show our American family and friends that there is more to England than tea, crumpets and London.

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography   A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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We wanted to highlight the area’s natural beauty , the countryside,my heritage and the charm of the North East.  We chose vintage shades of off whites, ivories, cream and taupes.

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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My dress was a silk sheath with a deep v back and long vintage style train and was custom made by Romana Keveza couture. I designed my bespoke veil and it was handmade by Margaret Duncan at Bridal Veil Falls in NYC East Village out of vintage laces – it got so much attention. My shoes were sparkly numbers from Jimmy Choo that I learnt definitely weren’t dancin’ shoes let alone walking ones.

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I carried sweet peas and other tonal white seasonal English flowers.

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Our confetti was lavender and flower petals, Daniel is a musician so it was handed out in cones of vintage sheet paper.

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My favourite moment in the day was when i arrived at the alter and stood next to my husband to be.

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My cousin Stuart surprised everyone in church when he ‘sang’ his reading so beautifully, it was amazing and so memorable.

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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The two little flower girls wore custom dresses I designed with a lace shrug from Monsoon.  I also made their dollies exact replica dresses.  They wore ballet flats from J Crew.

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The other ladies all chose their own dresses, designer and style in tonal taupes. I wanted them to feel comfortable, be themselves and have fun, they are all so lovely but yet unique and I wanted them to shine individually. They also all lived in different places, LA, Dubai, NYC and London so we couldn’t co-ordinate the same cookie cutter look so easily.

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The first time we saw all the dresses together was on the morning of the wedding and it worked great even though all were different fabrics and shades some where true ‘bridesmaids’ and some designer such as Acne and Vera Wang.

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They all wore their own shoes with heel of choice and I have no idea about their undies! Lets just hope they wore some.

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All the other details were done by my mum, family and friends.  My bridesmaids and I even made the floral arch around the church door on the morning of the wedding.

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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Unfortunately a lot of Daniel’s family from New York didn’t end up making the trip from the USA to England. He has a big family and they are all very close and it was disappointing they couldn’t be there so I made ‘masks’ of their faces that we used in our photo booth and official pictures so they felt included as if they were there.

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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My ‘something’ in blue was a ‘someone’- my close friend Kate, she wore a blue dress and did a reading.  She is the bestest friend a girl could have and always brings good luck so she was the only choice for such an important role.

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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Our speeches ended up being a rather long list of sentimental thank you’s and far from the usual roastings… which was sweet but I suspect slightly boring for some guests, hopefully the individual customised mini Lanson champagne bottles everyone got kept them awake.

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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My two flower girls where the only kiddies at the wedding so to keep them occupied without video games I made them a goodie bag and an spy game where they had to take pictures of the things they spied such as a top hat or two people dancing, we developed them in black and white and got some great shots from a different perspective.

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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Most guests stayed over at Headlam Hall so I made welcome signs for the bedroom doors that doubled as do not disturb signs for the morning after and an invitation to join the newly weds for a full English the next am.

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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After the wedding we honeymooned in the Seychelles and Dubai then back to NYC to work!

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A Real White Wedding in the North East by Sean Elliott Photography

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My top tip for other Brides Up North would be try not to please everyone, you will never succeed! Its your wedding do what you want your way.

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Congratulations Katie-Jane and Daniel!

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Are you newly wed?  Click here to find out more about submitting your own Real Wedding to feature on Brides Up North. 

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  – Images © 2012 Sean Elliott Photography

Sean Elliott Photography is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, but this is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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Real Wedding Recap 2011: Golden Sands (Of Tynemouth!), A Real Beach Wedding In The North East – Claire & Jesse

January 2nd, 2012 | Julia Braime

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Been for that bracing New Year’s dip in the North Sea yet? Today’s Real Wedding couple save you the trouble!  Its last day of this ’s Christmas break and the final Real Wedding Recap for 2011 (we are starting 2012 in style tomorrow!), this one is a corker!  Happy New Year Claire & Jesse!

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Was your favourite wedding from 2011 included in my 10 personal picks?  Browse all the Real Weddings to date by clicking here.

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Well!  Who needs Malibu Beach?!  Not Brides Up North it seems!  The absolutely fan-bloomin’-tastic set of Real Wedding images from Featured Supplier, Sean Elliott Photography has to be one of my favourite yet.

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Chosen your honeymoon yet? Forget the Seychelles.  I’m thinking Tynemouth all the way…

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Surf’s up!

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Sean Elliott Photography says: Its Jesse and Claire, another North East girl swept away by an American!  This seems to be a trend as I’ve now shot five weddings with North East girls flying over the big pond!

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Jesse and Claire live in the USA and Jesse loves the outdoor life, surf sand and sea.  With his new wife Claire a Tynemouth girl what more could a man ask for!

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They actually got married in the US and had a celebration and blessing In the UK at Tynemouth Priory followed by a reception at Crusoe’s cafe and Tynemouth Longsands beach.

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An incredibly fun and easy going wedding with lots of sunshine.  The American men LOVED the fact they were drinking one of America’s best selling beers – Newcastle Brown Ale – from the source!

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They certainly got the weather for it and the surfboards were a must for the beach… I felt like I was at a beach party!

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SEAN ELLIOTT PHOTOGRAPHY

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SEAN ELLIOTT PHOTOGRAPHY

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SEAN ELLIOTT PHOTOGRAPHY 

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SEAN ELLIOTT PHOTOGRAPHY

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SEAN ELLIOTT PHOTOGRAPHY 

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Brides and photographers, share the love!  Contact Brides Up North to see your Real Wedding images featured on Brides Up North blog.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – © 2011 Sean Elliott Photography

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Sean Elliott Photography is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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#BUNtweetup Yorkshire… A Video Blog!

October 8th, 2011 | Julia Braime

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Are you having a fabulous Saturday Brides Up North?!  Have you managed to pull your man away from all the sport that seems to be on our TV screens today or are you getting stuck in with him?

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I’ve been dying to share this little video blog with you ever since Steven from Forever Film sent me over then final edit.  I think Steven has managed to capture the feel of the Brides Up North Tweet Up Yorkshire so perfectly – lots of friendly people, clinking drinks, great music, treats galore, fun and laughter. 

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I hate seeing myself on film, but with Steven’s help, I think I just about pull it off! I hope that you enjoy it!

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Let’s do it all over again soon Yorkshire!

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Yorkshire Tweet Up With Wedding Ideas Magazine

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So, obviously in the excitement of the moment, Idid miss out a few thank yous – doh! (what can I say, I had had a LOT of help – and had consumed a couple of glasses of wine by this time!).  So, once again, here is the full roll call of all the amazing wedding industry suppliers who helped me to pull off a fabulous evening:

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Dine Services at The Mansion (stunning venue with attentive, slick and professional service); the beautiful, organised, calming and outright fab Katie from Perfect Days Vintage; the gorgeous and very very cool Jo from Vintage Twee; lovely lovely Lynne from Stems Design – an exceptionally talented and enthusiastic florist who decided that an orchid centrepiece just wasn’t good enough – we needed a tree (!); creative cake lady Skye from The Whimsical Cake Company (who made some teeny tiny white rose cupcakes and some very moreish pink cake pops); the fabulous girls at Fancie who branded my scrumptious Brides Up North cakes to the max; the amazing Andy Garfitt and Matt Tordoff of Greyeye Photography who constantly have me in stitches (book them now!); the super cool dreambooth – have a go, you’ll love it!; an amazing string quartet The Dotted Crotchets who rock pop songs better than Katy Perry herself; the super fun Sean Elliott Photography with his chalk board of one liners; Andrea from the online treasure trove And All Things Nice; Sheree at Cute Maps for, well, making the maps cute; fantastic sport Forever Film on cameras (Spielberg better watch out for this Steven) and the super talented Helen at What A Do Weddings who designed my kick ass goody bags. 

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To see all the official photographs from the night click here.

To see all the delicious styling details from the night click here.

To see all the dreambooth images from the night, click here.

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The Tweet Ups (held in Yorkshire, the North East and the North West) were COMPLETELY SOLD OUT last time.  To PRE-REGISTER for the next set of Tweet Ups in 2012, please contact me.

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  – Video blog © 2011 Forever Film

Forever Film is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier but this is not a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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